Taylor Swift – The Tortured Poets ​Department – full review

By Abbie Forster

‘All is ​fair​ in ​love​ and ​poetry​,’ is the tagline for pop sensation Taylor Swift’s latest album, The Tortured Poets ​Department. Swift​ delighted fans by dropping this surprise double album on April 19, featuring collaborations with Post Malone and Florence + The Machine. 

​​Swift immediately managed to gain all places in the top 10 of the ‘Billboard 100’, with ‘Fortnight’ coming in at number one, ‘Down Bad’ at number two and ‘I Can Do It With A Broken Heart’ at number three.​ 

In the aftermath of her six-year relationship with British actor Joe Alwyn, fans expected her most emotional album yet and they were not disappointed. From the debut song “Fortnight” to “​loml​” to “thanK you aIMee” it is clear from these 31 new songs that Swift has entered a new ‘era’ within herself, and her music. The self-proclaimed ‘Chairman of the Tortured Poets Department’ narrates a story of several periods throughout her love life that she has had to reflect upon. She sounds resentful, bitter, and nostalgic, yet more beautifully chaotic than she has done before. 

Swift is rightly praised for her top-notch songwriting skills as she captures her emotions and turns them into songs that her loyal ‘Swifties’ will undoubtedly relate to. “You swore that you loved me but where were the clues? / I died on the altar waiting for the proof” ; “​So​ how much sad did you think I had / Did you think I had in me? / How much tragedy?” These touching lyrics come from track five of the album, “So Long, London.”  

​​This is one of the most emotional songs on the album as it is clear Swift has been very vulnerable about details of her previous six-year relationship, as seen from the lyrics.​ The song starts with a melancholic vocalisation of Swift’s voice, imitating church bells – a suggestion that she and Alwyn were to be wed- and then dramatically changes to an upbeat pulsing tone, like an anxious heartbeat. 

Throughout the song, Swift’s beautiful voice tells the story reflecting her previous relationship. She encapsulates how unseen she felt, and how she tried to keep it alive, but it eventually became ​too​ one-sided. Swift sings: “I left all I knew / you left me at the house by the Heath”, a nostalgic reference to the house that the couple shared near Hampstead Heath in London. 

​​Swift reveals on the track ‘I Can Do It With A Broken Heart’ how the undying support from the Swifties really helped as she embarked on her Eras Tour” “All the pieces of me shattered as the crowd was chanting ‘more’.” ​This references how ​Swift​ felt like her life was falling apart but she knew that she had a job to do.​ “I was hitting my marks” also references her job as a performer as ‘marks’ are something that an actor/dancer/ singer needs to hit to deliver their act, a further reference to the record breaking $1 billion grossing ‘Eras ​Tour.’​ 

Whilst Taylor was on tour, her breakup with ex-partner Joe Alwyn was announced. ​Since the announcement there has been several videos of Swift becoming emotional whilst performing songs she had dedicated to her former lover.​ 

​​The Tortured Poets Department is personally my favourite album of Taylor’s so far, all two hours of music really tells the story of Taylor’s growth as she finds her way through the stages of a breakup.​ There is no doubt that on her next album there will be a lot more love to show for her new ​beau,​ NFL star Travis Kelce.  

The Tortured Poets Department is out now and available to listen to on all platforms: https://taylor.lnk.to/TTPD-theanthology  

Written by 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.